SBD/August 19, 2013/Facilities

Chargers Struggling To Reach Stadium Deal Amid Turmoil In City Government

Chargers officials have been pushing for Qualcomm updates for the last decade
Calling Qualcomm Stadium "a dump really is an insult to dumps," according to Jim Trotter of THE MMQB. The JumboTron is "so old that some replacement parts can only be found on eBay." Heavy rains "often cause the drainage systems to back up," and it is "not uncommon for sewage to leak onto the field and into the visiting locker room." An independent audit performed for San Diego shows that the stadium needs $70M "in maintenance and repairs." The Chargers for the last decade have "proposed a variety of plans for a new stadium that would keep the team in San Diego." The latest is a "downtown venue near the convention center" and Petco Park. But the "simple fact is that the Chargers don’t even have a viable entity to negotiate with." Team management is "dealing with the most dysfunctional city government in the country," and "that is not hyperbole." The fact that Chargers Chair & President Dean Spanos "hasn’t packed up the team already ... speaks volumes about his sincerity about keeping the Chargers in town, although many of his critics will refuse to accept that." Spanos said, "We’ve been over 10 years in this process, and there have been times where we thought we were close. But we may be the furthest we’ve been from getting a stadium done because of what’s happened locally. It’s really a sad situation. But we’re not going to stop trying to get a deal done. I haven’t given up." Spanos "recognizes the financial issues facing the city, which is why his group is trying to structure a deal in which any public money would not come from the general fund." Trotter wrote San Diego "needs strong leadership to help get a deal done, and there’s no indication such leadership currently exists at City Hall." The city without that is "sure to lose the team" (MMQB.SI.com, 8/16).
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Facilities, NFL, San Diego Chargers

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